From INFORMAL TALKS, delivered at Golden Gate Hall
In the “Voice of Silence,” it is stated, “The self of matter and the self of spirit can never meet. One of the twain must disappear. There is no place for both. Does the Vedanta hold the same view?
Self of matter and self of spirit cannot meet. Rama thinks that the self of matter and the self of spirit must have had a different meaning from what is understood.
The Self of matter which ought to disappear before the Self of spirit is realized, is what llama has been calling the false ego, the false or apparent self as shown in the image reflected in the water.
That must disappear before you can realize your unity with God. That is true in that sense. Thinking ignorantly must be dispelled. This ignorance which identifies you with the body, this little “Responsible copy righting Self” is the self of matter and must be first destroyed or dispelled.
If by the terms ‘ Self of matter ‘ and ‘ Self of spirit’ it is understood that matter is here and Spirit is somewhere else, that matter has one self, and spirit has another self, that they are distinct, separate, this is wrong. Matter and spirit have one and the same self.
Spirit is much misunderstood. If by spirit is meant what philosophers call mind, even then mind and matter have not two distinct selves, one and the same they are. The difference is in degree, not in kind.
Science has proved that matter and mind are one and the same. Philosophers show that matter and energy are one and the same.
It was first pointed out by Leibnitz in Europe, although it was known to India 10,000 years ago that “Atoms are simply centres of force.” This theory has been taken up and proved by Science. Lord Kelvin has shown in one of his great papers by means of mathematical propositions that Matter and Force are the same. How then can Matter and Spirit be different? But even if he meant Matter and Mind, they are one and the same.
Go to the mountains. In the Himalayas you see magnificent scenery. There is the fragrance of flowers, the singing of birds, the murmur of streams, the sweet sound of the breeze. What are these? Are they not matter? But this matter is being transformed into power, into thought and exhilaration, into God Consciousness, into music, creating lofty ideas in you. There we see the outside matter transforming itself into thought. What about your great houses, your ships, your cities and towns, men and women? All these were at one time simply mental thought. The house was built in the mind first, and constructed afterwards.
In the Himalayas, material objects are changed into Mental Thought, – just as water is turned or condensed into aqueous vapour or aqueous vapour into water. What does it prove? That both are the same. Similarly, if matter were different from mind, then mind would not affect matter and vice versa.
There is a beautiful poem written in the Persian language, the meaning or substance of which is that “A drop of water in the shape of a tear fell from the clouds. The tear fell, and when asked why this weeping, it replied, “O, I am such a tiny, puny, insignificant thing. I am so small, oh, too small, and the ocean is so big. I weep at my smallness.” It was told, “Weep not, do not confine yourself to name and form only, but look within you; see what you are. Are you not water; and what is the ocean? Is it not water too? Don’t look upon yourself as being confined in space and time. Look beyond this Space and Time, and see your reality.” You become miserable when you confine yourself within time. Lift yourself above all. Not only are matter and spirit the same, but all are the same. True self is beyond all time. The whole world is within you, just as in your dreams, though you think yourself to be in the woods or forests, in the mountains, by the rivers, yet they are all within you. If they were outside, then the room would be weighed down, and the bed would be wet with the water you saw.
Similarly the Vedanta says, “All the world is within you; the astral and the psychic worlds are all within you, and you think that you are in them. Just as a lady carrying a mirror on her thumb looks into the mirror and thinks she is in the glass, but it is just the reverse, so, as a matter of fact, the world is in you, and you are not in the world. There are two kinds of talk, talk from the head, and talk from the heart. Talk from the head can be handled at any time we please. When talk proceeds from the heart, then it becomes different.
There are many kinds of whistles. Some imitate the peacock, others imitate the sound of a cock, others the sound of the pig, etc. Whenever you blow these whistles, you can get the sound of a pig or cock at will, but you cannot make the cock, the real peacock or the real pig do your bidding whenever you want them, nor can you make the cock cease his crowing, the pig cease his squeaking when they are not disposed to do so. They cannot be bound by time or place. In the Himalayas, the song flows and is formed into thought and proceeds no one knows where. Is it destroyed? No. Trees will preserve it, rivers will keep it, the earth will hold it; it will be carried through the atmosphere, will traverse the whole universe until it finds a man fit to receive it.
All thought comes direct from God. It does not come from this separate, apparent, responsible, copyrighting Ego. It comes when that Ego is dispelled.
According to Rama, every book is an inspired book, God’s book, not only the Bible but Emerson’s books, Darwin’s books, Shakespeare, all are inspired just as much as the Vedas, because they cannot come out until man’s little self is put aside.